Braids are always the go-to when working with natural hair because protective styles are highly adaptable and beneficial to one's hair health.
The hair conflict: Human vs. Kanekalon braiding hair
While wearing a gorgeous set of braids, you can give your natural hair a well-deserved respite from daily maintenance.
But there's always the battle of the mane: human braiding hair versus kanekalon braiding hair.
While synthetic hair has advanced in its ability to mimic the look and feel of human hair, an imitation will never be better than the original. In short, human braiding hair outperforms kanekalon braiding hair by a long shot.
Today, we will find in-depth reasons why human braiding hair is a better fit for you than kanekalon braiding hair. So be sure to grab your snack, and let’s start!
Where does human braiding hair come from?
Gorgeous cornrows using human braiding hair
As the name suggests, human braiding hair is crafted from human hair, either from one donor or multiple donors, to form a braiding bundle. Human hair is mostly sourced from India, Vietnam, and other parts of Asia.
There are two main types of human hair; Remy human hair and non-Remy human hair.
- Remy hair is collected from one donor with all the cuticles intact and facing the same direction. As a result, the hair is tangle-free.
- Non-Remy hair comes from multiple donors without the cuticles intact.
The main differences between Remy and non-Remy hair are the collection method and the way the cuticles are aligned.
What is Kanekalon Braiding Hair Made of?
Metallic colored braids using kanekalon braiding hair
When it comes to synthetic hair extensions, kanekalon braiding hair is the most commonly used braiding hair. Modacrylic fiber is used for creating kanekalon braiding hair.
The fibers used for kanekalon braiding hair include controversial toxic fibers like acrylonitrile and vinyl chloride. This fiber helps make the braiding hair flame retardant and resistant to dripping or melting.
In a nutshell, kanekalon is made using low-grade acrylic heated and strung into strands to create individual hair fibers. These strands are then tied into extensions used to create wigs, weaves, and braiding hair.
You can also use hot water to set braided hair. So, if Kanekalon's braiding hair is curled or braided, hot water will seal and hold the hairdo and keep it from falling out.
- Kanekalon braiding hair is coarser and crimped to resemble Afro-Caribbean human hair.
- It is heavier braiding hair that isn't as soft as other types of braiding hair due to its coarseness.
- Kanekalon braiding hair is stretched and feathered before installation for a more refined braided finish.
Is human or synthetic hair better for braiding?
Ombre knotless box braids
One of the key differences between synthetic hair and human hair is the realistic finish. While Kanekalon braiding hair is a top-tier synthetic hair, it is no match for Remy human hair.
Women recognize and appreciate human braiding hair for blending seamlessly with natural hair for various protective hairstyles. Human braiding hair features all the natural hair characteristics, from the look and feel to the movement.
As for kanekalon braiding hair, it is a higher-quality synthetic fiber than other synthetic fibers. It moves more naturally compared to other synthetic extensions and looks less wiry.
But, if the kanekalon fibers are excessively plasticky or "hard," the friction it causes will give the fingers a burning feeling due to the constant braiding motion.
How do I maintain human braiding hair?
Ciara’s faux Bonitalocs
The misconception that human braiding hair requires costly upkeep is false. Human braiding hair is a one-time investment and requires the same level of care as your natural hair.
While you can use standard shampoo and conditioner to wash and maintain hair extensions, sulfate and silicone-free products are best for human hair.
Thanks to the superior hair quality, you will spend less time and money maintaining your human braiding extensions than Kanekalon braiding hair.
How do I take care of synthetic kanekalon braiding hair?
Protective styles using kanekalon braids
Since kanekalon is not real hair, it does not require the same care as natural hair. As suds from your scalp wash through the extensions, they will be cleaned. After washing, use a leave-in conditioner using your fingers to comb. This will help detangle your kanekalon extensions.
Kanekalon braiding hair is an ongoing expense with high maintenance costs. You'll spend a lot more money and time making the synthetic fiber look more natural before replacing it.
How long does braiding hair last?
The longevity of human hair is unmatchable
Human braiding hair can easily last a year or more with everyday use. So, human hair will always outlast synthetic hair.
On the other hand, heat-friendly synthetic hair like kanekalon braiding hair will typically last only 4 to 6 months. It is important to remember that even the artificial hair marketed as “heat-friendly” can melt and damage the hair, shortening its lifespan.
Your best bet for long-lasting kanekalon hair is limiting their use.
Which is the most versatile braiding hair?
The versatility of human braiding hair is unbeatable
The versatility of human hair, in general, is well known. Human hair can be colored, permed, and styled just like your hair for stylish protective styles.
Human braiding hair extensions allow you to express yourself in the styles that are best suited to you without the fear of hair damage.
However, the versatility of kanekalon braiding hair is limited. On heat-resistant kanekalon braiding hair, the best you can do is use controlled heat.
Since they already underwent extensive chemical processing, you can’t color them again. The most popular alternative to this dilemma is buying a new kanekalon braiding hair in your desired hair color.
How much does human braiding cost?
Human hair is a one-time investment
As we all know, human braiding hair can cost you a pretty penny! Human braiding hair extensions of high quality can range from a couple of hundred dollars to thousands.
Another alternative to buying premium braiding hair made of virgin Remy human hair is buying directly from well-loved hair brands like Hair Factory. Our products are meticulously crafted with high-quality human hair carefully selected and ethically sourced for you.
When you pay for human braiding hair, you aren’t only paying for the hair quality. You are also paying for the longevity, versatility, and realistic finish, to name a few.
How much does kanekalon braiding hair cost?
Small box braids
A set of heat-resistant kanekalon braiding hair can cost up to a few hundred dollars to a couple of thousands.
Kanekalon braiding hair is often less expensive than human hair extensions but more expensive than most synthetic hair extensions. The cost of kanekalon braiding hair will vary greatly depending on where you shop!
Some FAQs About Braiding Hair - Answered!
Answering your burning questions about braiding hair
What is the difference between kanekalon and other types of synthetic hair?
Kanekalon is a higher-quality synthetic fiber than other synthetic fibers, which are less expensive and feel more plastic-like to the touch. It moves more naturally and looks less wiry.
Why does kanekalon hair itch?
The reason why kanekalon braiding hair can cause itching is due to the fibers used to imitate the hair strands. As mentioned earlier, kanekalon is created using acrylic fiber with an alkaline coating, which can irritate your hair and scalp worse.
Does human braided hair cause itching?
In short, no, human braiding hair doesn’t cause itching. Two of the most common reasons why your human braiding hair might cause itching are a lack of proper upkeep or getting your braids installed too tightly.
Since braids take forever to dry, it's tempting to go longer between wash days. Your scalp gathers dead skin cells, oil, and dust, which becomes stuck at the roots. Once you remove the build-ups, the discomfort and itching usually go away.
Can kanekalon hair be dyed?
The short answer is a yes but at the expense of shortening the already short lifespan of kanekalon hair. Synthetic braiding hair like kanekalon can only be darkened using unconventional coloring materials like fabric or cream color dye.
If you want to play around with different hair colors, get light-colored kanekalon braiding hair like bleach blonde, gray, or white braided hair for a bold and dynamic color. Your best bet is to buy a new kanekalon braiding hair in the desired shade.
Based on the comparison between human braiding hair and kanekalon braiding hair, it is evident that human hair extensions are the best alternative for braiding hair.
Human braiding hair offers numerous benefits, including being treated just like your own hair. Plus, they also last longer than kanekalon braiding hair with little upkeep.
Ready to give your natural hair a break with protective styles using human braiding hair?
Shop at Hair Factory, one of the leading hair brands, for the finest hand-crafted 100% virgin Indian hair. Experience the ultimate hair happiness with the best human braiding hair from Hair Factory today!